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Self-regulation in early childhood: The interplay between family risk, temperament and teacher-child interactions

This study investigates the interplay between family risk and the quality of classroom interactions and their impact on self-regulation skills in two groups of children--children from socioeconomically disadvantaged backgrounds (at-risk) and non-risk children. Participants included 485 children (N = 93 classrooms)--233 (N = 47 classrooms) of which were from socioeconomically disadvantaged areas. Temperament was measured using teacher report. Trained observers rated classroom quality via live observations of a typical preschool day. Behavioral regulation was assessed using direct measures and emotional regulation was assessed using a teacher report. Analyses using multiple group structural equation modeling showed that at-risk children had lower levels of cool behavior regulation than non-risk children. In addition, classroom quality was positively linked to cool behavioral self-regulation. Moderating effects were additionally found between family risk and classroom quality on both hot behavioral regulation and emotional regulation. Classroom quality served as a protective factor for children exposed to more risk factors. Results showed complex associations between individual characteristics, classroom quality, and family risk, indicating a need to further explore the interplay among these variables. (author abstract)
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Reports & Papers

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